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Review: Vampire Academy: A Graphic Novel

Vampire Academy: A Graphic Novel by Richelle Mead, adapted by Leigh Dragoon and illustrated by Emma Vieceli
Young Adult, Graphic Novel, Vampires
Paperback $12.99 (144 pages, RAZORBILL)
After two years on the run, best friends Rose and Lissa are caught and returned to St. Vladimir's Academy, a private high school for vampires and half-bloods. It's filled with intrigue, danger - and even romance. Enter their dark, fascinating world through a new series of 144-page full-color graphic novels. The entire first Vampire Academy novel has been adapted for book one by Leigh Dragoon and overseen by Richelle Mead, while the beautiful art of acclaimed British illustrator Emma Vieceli brings the story to life.
Author Site: RichelleMead.com

Great Adaptation, For Fans and Future Fans (4 stars)

You'd only have to read my review of the book this graphic novel is based on to know I love the freshness Mead brought to the teen vampire fiction genre. It's one of my favorite just-for-fun reads and a series I have turned friends and family onto multiple times. Seeing it being adapted into one of my favorite mediums instantly gave it must-have status. But could the team of Dragoon and Vieceli pull it off without treading on the toes of fandom and author alike?

As far as the story goes I think Dragoon did a great job of adapting the book into a graphic novel. My only issue there is that the final few scenes felt rushed. I had to flip back and make sure I hadn't missed a page or two. Another thing I felt did not translate well was Dimitri in general. Both visually and in dialog he fell flat. He's not my favorite character already so it would have been great to at least have him be more visually compelling.

In full color from start to finish the quality on this book is fantastic. Vieceli's style treads the line between comic and manga (much like the Twilight adaptation) but aside from Mia's creepy Lolita-styled hair and clothing I didn't feel was consistent with the book it works. I definitely found Mia distracting in this, her hair in particular felt jarring. It looked out of place in a bad way. I think if that had been toned down just a little it would have been great but it kicked my love of this adaptation down from love to like.

On the whole this is a nicely done adaptation that any die-hard fan of the Vampire Academy series should snap up. If you've not read the books and have been considering it I would certainly suggest giving this a try as it is a nice starting point. Can't wait for the release of the Frostbite (VA #2) graphic novel in spring 2012!

Other Reviews:

Notes: Purchased this via Amazon.com.

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